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Sears gets exclusive on Jenn-Air


Sears Holdings Corp. is about to become the exclusive national retailer for Jenn-Air appliances in a deal that will cut out both Home Depot and Lowe’s. Sears announced yesterday that it will introduce 17 “super premium” Jenn-Air refrigerators, dishwashers and cooktops to 255 of its largest stores by Nov. 15.

By January, Jenn-Air will no longer be sold through Home Depot and Lowe’s, according to Sears, although independent dealers and regional chains can still carry the brand.

Sears is the No. 1 retailer of large appliances with 31% of the market, according to the Stevenson Co., a market research firm that closely follows the appliance industry. But the Hoffman Estates, Ill., retailer has watched its market share steadily erode over the years as customers, often driven by promotions, turn to the warehouse home centers for their appliances. According to Stevenson’s most recent estimates, Lowe's and Home Depot have a 20% and 11% share, respectively.

Whirlpool, which acquired Jenn-Air as part of its 2006 purchase of Maytag, manufactures a number of appliances for Sears under the Kenmore private label.

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